The notice came early enough. You know, the little white card in the mail to remind you it’s time to renew your driver’s license.
I’d heard a few rumors about a “Real I.D.” being required or an “Enhanced” edition where you wouldn’t need to carry your passport with you when flying to certain destinations. I began getting all worked up about it wondering if I’d be able to find the right documents to get the biggest and the best driver’s license out there! The inner drive seemed to bubble up out of nowhere, until I remembered I only fly — well — never. But if I did choose to fly, I’d want to be prepared.
I had exactly 15 days left to get-er-done, and as I visited with my friend, I picked her brain. “So, have you renewed your license into one of those fancy ones?” I asked.
She whipped out her new and improved version with an American flag upon it, gave me the directions, and within no time I began checking off each item needed. Game on!
The list was lettered A-F and if you add that up, that’s six areas of identification if you wanted the best of the best driver’s license. Deep within, I knew there was a problem. The problem was that I wasn’t sure I could remember where I put all that stuff to prove who I was!
However, the first place I looked, I hit the jackpot! The directions specifically requested I submit a copy of my birth certificate with a raised seal upon it. As I looked in the folder, the document needed now lay flat. The seal was there somewhere, and I prayed the eyes of the license giver could see a few of the outlined remnants upon it.
Next up a W-2 form was on the list of requests but since that didn’t match my name upon the birth certificate, I then needed proof of my name change. Thus, I dug deep for a certified copy of our marriage certificate.
On it went with a list of choices, such as a copy of my Social Security card. Oddly enough it couldn’t be laminated. Right, like I’m going to haul around that piece of paper for X number of years without cover. So much for that. Not to worry because I could use my valid driver’s license, but only if I’m not using that piece of evidence for proof with my picture upon it.
No, can’t use that one twice. So, on I dug to find a bank statement, or canceled check. Both seemed easy enough, but as I was supposed to “redact” the account number on each, I phoned a friend for clarification. Visually that word could mean many a thing!
Once I’d found all of my documents, I called the Recorder’s office (who I thought should have been able to record my existence more than I, since they have an office and all), and was told to come on down.
That evening, I set the folder out, pleased-as-punch to show my husband the accomplishments for the day. He merely glanced up and said, “Oh, mine was easy to renew. I just walked in and got the same ol’ one I always had and didn’t even have to take an eye exam!”
And therein lies the difference. He’s not wasting time worrying about things that may never happen, while I prepare as if someone’s coming to get me if I can’t find proof as to who I am.
Interesting it is that this side of the veil we need proof we are alive, and once we are gone, we need proof of death. Quite opposite it is according to His Word. Ephesians 2:1 and 4 says, “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world. But because of his great love for us, God made us alive with Christ.”
One day we will be more alive than ever as the Real I.D. or proof of citizenship will be death to self and alive in Him. Perhaps not much different than what should be lived out this side of the veil anyway, lest we forget, He is our Real I.D. Amen.
Kathleen Kjolhaug lives on the family homestead outside of Clearbrook with her husband Pete. She enjoys writing about family life and brings humor into the sacred moments of everyday living.
Theology in the Trenches appears in several local newspapers throughout Minnesota. Kathleen can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org